LINCOLN MIDDLE SCHOOL
The new Lincoln Middle School reflects School District 81’s commitment to 21st-century education through experiential (project-based) learning, critical thinking and problem solving, and collaboration. This progressive school is rooted in a child-centered curriculum to develop the “whole child” through team teaching responsive to student growth and transition.
Lincoln Middle School houses three grade-level teams, one on each of its floors. Each team includes flexible, light-filled classrooms, a science center, a teacher center, small-group instruction rooms, and a student “living room” outfitted with “soft” comfortable furnishings that visually and physically link to the exterior with balcony terraces. A large reading terrace and green roof garden invite students to leave the second-floor library for relaxation and multiple classroom activities. Each team area also includes one classroom dedicated to interdisciplinary project-based learning. All rooms encourage student participation in experiential problem-solving projects and are outfitted with versatile mobile furnishings that allow easy reconfiguration to support changing instruction, facilitate student collaboration, and encourage hands-on learning.
Flexibility and design innovation are also reflected in the school’s cafeteria/dining space, which doubles as a performance theater through the use of 500-seat retractable theater seating. The space can accommodate the entire student body and features a fully equipped raised stage for thespian and musical performances and large-group gatherings.
The Lincoln Middle School grew out of school-community collaboration at its finest. After several referenda had failed while facilities deteriorated and budgets tightened, students and alumni responded to the efforts and vision of the Superintendent to rally the community in support of the new school, even though it wouldn’t be ready for those students to attend. The resulting facility is a source of pride for all and a symbol of the importance of education to the community.